We’ve lived so long under the spell of hierarchy—from god-kings to feudal lords to party bosses—that only recently have we awakened to see not only that “regular” citizens have the capacity for self-governance, but that without their engagement our huge global crises cannot be addressed. The changes needed for human society simply to survive, let alone thrive, are so profound that the only way we will move toward them is if we ourselves, regular citizens, feel meaningful ownership of solutions through direct engagement. Our problems are too big, interrelated, and pervasive to yield to directives from on high.
—Frances Moore Lappé, excerpt from Time for Progressives to Grow Up
Sunday, March 9, 2014
Be Careful What You Fight For
This piece focuses on a major method of opposition that has been, and is used, by the "haves" against the "have-nots" to achieve social justice. Elsewhere these two groups have been expressed as ruling classes versus their subjects, monarchs and aristocrats versus serfs, capitalists versus workers etc. Ruling classes have been the norm in human society since we settled down in agricultural communities instead of hunting and foraging for wild foods. Although this phase only consists of less than 2% of human existence, still it has comprised the last 2%. Many people have dreamed of egalitarian societies which existed in the earlier 98% of human existence.
What this author writes about is the use of one favorite method that ruling classes have used to maintain their rule against such dreamers--divide and conquer.